The revamped purse structure is scheduled to begin on Wednesday, opening day at Saratoga.
For dirt races at 1 1/8 miles and longer, NYRA will provide incremental increases for every betting interest over six that start. For turf races longer than 1 1/8 miles, the increases will take effect for every betting interest over eight that start.
The purse increases per betting interest for both dirt and turf races are $5,000 for maiden special weight races, $8,000 for non-winners of one, two, and three, and $10,000 for allowances and overnight stakes.
For example, an open allowance race for non-winners of two at 1 1/8 miles on the dirt with ten betting interests will increase $32,000 from the current purse of $70,000 to $102,000.
An open maiden special weight race at 1 3/8 miles on the turf with 11 betting interests will jump $15,000 from the current purse of $63,000 to $78,000.
“This is an innovative and exciting experiment that will reward the connections of horses that are born and bred to go a distance of ground,” said Rick Violette Jr., president of the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association. “There is sometimes just criticism for our reliance on pure speed and, hopefully, this could start a trend towards rewarding endurance as well.”
Average daily purses for the 2007 Saratoga meeting were $773,738, the highest of any thoroughbred race track in the country.